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The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants

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Your best clients don't know you exist...

...and that's why they're not your clients yet. They're the clients of other, more visible, more trusted, more successful consultants. You can fix that.

These more successful consultants are not smarter than you. They're probably not harder working.

They probably have specialized in a way that makes it easier for them to earn visibility and trust from great prospects who then become great clients.

You can make an important decision you have been avoiding; a decision that will change everything for you. You can specialize. The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants will help.

Specializing your indie consulting business has obvious benefits (visibility, momentum, impact, and profit) and non-obvious obstacles (fear, ineffective approach to deciding). This book uses a systematic approach to help you navigate those obstacles.

In guiding hundreds of business owners through this process of specializing, I’ve observed 3 patterns that describe how they make the decision. We tend to do one of the following:

  1. Leverage a head start.

  2. Pursue an interest in serving a particular kind of business or solving a particular kind of problem.

  3. Pursue an entrepreneurial thesis.

A head start is some relative advantage that you possess. Building on an advantage is a specialization accelerant and a risk reducer, at least compared to undertaking the same specialization journey without that head start.

Head starts generally take the form of one or more of these advantages:

  • A significant depth or quality of access, or large number of connections, to a target market.

  • A significant amount of credibility in a market vertical or within a certain audience.

  • A significant depth of expertise in some area.

  • A significant depth of insight into a target market’s needs or business realities.

  • A significant ability to earn trust from prospects or clients.

You can specialize without any particular head start, but if you ignore a significant head start, you’re making more work for yourself. You might decide to do this for good reasons, but understand what you’re giving up by ignoring that head start.

  • If you want to understand how specialization works before diving in

  • If you benefit from a systematic approach

  • If you don’t know how to choose a specialization

  • If you don’t know what to do once you’ve specialized…

then The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants is for you. You’ll learn:

  • What marketing actually is (for indie consultants, not product companies)

  • How specialization and positioning relate to marketing

  • The benefits and the risks of specializing in a platform

  • What marketing infrastructure helps you earn new visibility

  • The way fundamental marketing labor relates to specialization

  • How to choose the right beachhead for your business

  • How to navigate the risk of specializing

  • The tradeoffs in the 5 ways of specializing

  • The valuable opportunity that being bad at marketing presents

The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants can be read in a weekend, or a few hours if you power through it. Illustrated with visualizations of the important concepts and models introduced through the book's readable, friendly text, this book helps you become your own "positioning consultant" and make the critical strategy decision that unlocks a more successful version of your business.

Your best clients lie ahead of you. You don't need to be smarter, more extroverted, or more confident. You need to make one simple-but-challenging decision about how exactly to focus your business. The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants is the best tool to help you make this decision and find your best clients.


When you buy The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants via Gumroad, you'll get DRM-free MOBI, EPUB, and PDF versions of the book, an occasional email asking you to review it on Amazon.com (with fun landscape photographs of Taos, NM attached), and the eternal flame of the author's appreciation for your support of his work.


"There are many folks who believe they understand positioning, and then there's a smaller number who actually do. And then there's Philip. He's not going to just pronounce the answer to your question about business strategy, but help you do the work and test the hypotheses so that you learn during that process. Philip is the master of meaningful exploration, but once you've landed on the right choice for yourself, you'll keep leaning on those same habits--developed during the process--to be a better advisor to your clients. Your rate of learning will increase exponentially, because Philip is an absolute positioning expert. It's not as if the fog will lift suddenly when you absorb this book; it's more about teaching yourself how the fog lifts, and you keep seeing things more and more clearly in your practice."

- David C. Baker, Author of "The Business of Expertise"


"I've bought your book "The positioning manual for indie consultant" and, even if I'm not a consultant (but a software developer), I want to become one. That's the best resource I've ever seen on the subject, without fluff and straight to the point. Nice work! My hope is to go straight in a specialty without being the generalist-freelancer-coding-machine-without-impact (did that for too long as an employee)." 
- Matthieu Cneude


"I wish I'd written this book."
-Blair Enns, Author of "The Win Without Pitching Manifesto"

$9.99
$9.99

The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants

Your best clients don't know you exist...

...and that's why they're not your clients yet. They're the clients of other, more visible, more trusted, more successful consultants. You can fix that.

These more successful consultants are not smarter than you. They're probably not harder working.

They probably have specialized in a way that makes it easier for them to earn visibility and trust from great prospects who then become great clients.

You can make an important decision you have been avoiding; a decision that will change everything for you. You can specialize. The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants will help.

Specializing your indie consulting business has obvious benefits (visibility, momentum, impact, and profit) and non-obvious obstacles (fear, ineffective approach to deciding). This book uses a systematic approach to help you navigate those obstacles.

In guiding hundreds of business owners through this process of specializing, I’ve observed 3 patterns that describe how they make the decision. We tend to do one of the following:

  1. Leverage a head start.

  2. Pursue an interest in serving a particular kind of business or solving a particular kind of problem.

  3. Pursue an entrepreneurial thesis.

A head start is some relative advantage that you possess. Building on an advantage is a specialization accelerant and a risk reducer, at least compared to undertaking the same specialization journey without that head start.

Head starts generally take the form of one or more of these advantages:

  • A significant depth or quality of access, or large number of connections, to a target market.

  • A significant amount of credibility in a market vertical or within a certain audience.

  • A significant depth of expertise in some area.

  • A significant depth of insight into a target market’s needs or business realities.

  • A significant ability to earn trust from prospects or clients.

You can specialize without any particular head start, but if you ignore a significant head start, you’re making more work for yourself. You might decide to do this for good reasons, but understand what you’re giving up by ignoring that head start.

  • If you want to understand how specialization works before diving in

  • If you benefit from a systematic approach

  • If you don’t know how to choose a specialization

  • If you don’t know what to do once you’ve specialized…

then The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants is for you. You’ll learn:

  • What marketing actually is (for indie consultants, not product companies)

  • How specialization and positioning relate to marketing

  • The benefits and the risks of specializing in a platform

  • What marketing infrastructure helps you earn new visibility

  • The way fundamental marketing labor relates to specialization

  • How to choose the right beachhead for your business

  • How to navigate the risk of specializing

  • The tradeoffs in the 5 ways of specializing

  • The valuable opportunity that being bad at marketing presents

The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants can be read in a weekend, or a few hours if you power through it. Illustrated with visualizations of the important concepts and models introduced through the book's readable, friendly text, this book helps you become your own "positioning consultant" and make the critical strategy decision that unlocks a more successful version of your business.

Your best clients lie ahead of you. You don't need to be smarter, more extroverted, or more confident. You need to make one simple-but-challenging decision about how exactly to focus your business. The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants is the best tool to help you make this decision and find your best clients.


When you buy The Positioning Manual for Indie Consultants via Gumroad, you'll get DRM-free MOBI, EPUB, and PDF versions of the book, an occasional email asking you to review it on Amazon.com (with fun landscape photographs of Taos, NM attached), and the eternal flame of the author's appreciation for your support of his work.


"There are many folks who believe they understand positioning, and then there's a smaller number who actually do. And then there's Philip. He's not going to just pronounce the answer to your question about business strategy, but help you do the work and test the hypotheses so that you learn during that process. Philip is the master of meaningful exploration, but once you've landed on the right choice for yourself, you'll keep leaning on those same habits--developed during the process--to be a better advisor to your clients. Your rate of learning will increase exponentially, because Philip is an absolute positioning expert. It's not as if the fog will lift suddenly when you absorb this book; it's more about teaching yourself how the fog lifts, and you keep seeing things more and more clearly in your practice."

- David C. Baker, Author of "The Business of Expertise"


"I've bought your book "The positioning manual for indie consultant" and, even if I'm not a consultant (but a software developer), I want to become one. That's the best resource I've ever seen on the subject, without fluff and straight to the point. Nice work! My hope is to go straight in a specialty without being the generalist-freelancer-coding-machine-without-impact (did that for too long as an employee)." 
- Matthieu Cneude


"I wish I'd written this book."
-Blair Enns, Author of "The Win Without Pitching Manifesto"

  • MOBI, EPUB, and PDF versions of the book

  • MOBI, EPUB, and PDF versions of the book
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